Vallecula

Last revised by Craig Hacking on 21 Feb 2024

The epiglottic valleculae are paired small depressions in the oropharynx located either side of the median glossoepiglottic fold, anterior to the epiglottis and posterior to the base of tongue.  They are bounded laterally by the lateral glossoepiglottic folds. It has a function in the pharyngeal phase of swallowing, in particular swallowing solids.

Etymology

Vallecula is Latin for "small valley", a combination of valles (valley) and cula (diminutive suffix).

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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: barium swallow (black arrow)
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  • Figure 2: larynx coronal CT anatomy
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  • Figure 3: larynx coronal CT anatomy
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  • Figure 4: vocal cords (Gray's illustration)
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  • Figure 4: larynx (Gray's illustrations)
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